This is important.

If you’re at all interested in the incipient armed mayhem in Bangkok, you’ll want to listen to tonight’s episode of PM. The pull quote, from host Mark Colvin’s interview with ABC South-East Asia correspondent Zoe Daniel (who, incidentally, works right in the middle of the live-fire zone and is barricading her windows right about now):

MARK COLVIN: So if there is sniper fire, for instance, we can be pretty sure it’s not from the Red Shirts or have a reasonable chance it’s not?

ZOE DANIEL: Well, the government is suggesting that the Red Shirts could be equally responsible for sniper fire but I certainly haven’t seen any evidence to suggest that the Red Shirts have snipers and there have been a number of photographs taken with telephoto lenses of the military carrying snipers.

And I think that the death toll that we’re seeing, much as I think that it’s much lower than what the real death toll is, now standing at 35, I think it’s much higher than that, but only one of those 35 is from the army. Everyone else is civilian, journalist or medic.

And equally relevant, from former ABC correspondent Peter Lloyd later in the same program:

MARK COLVIN: We’re not talking about some kind of pure form of democracy, are we, in the sense that the Red Shirts are probably only quite largely there because of huge injections of money from Thaksin in his exile.

PETER LLOYD: That’s right. I mean Thaksin, when he was in government, won the hearts of people by stuffing their wallets. And the suspicion is that he’s been stuffing the wallets of the Red Shirts from exile.

And then follow Zoe Daniel on Twitter here.

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